China-based online entertainment service provider iQIYI has announced a new competition aimed at pushing the boundaries of video-based biometric identification.
It’s called the “Celebrity Video Identification Challenge”, and it will test various AI systems on their ability to identify a celebrity, whether it’s by face, voice, gait, or some other consistent metric. iQIYI says it will provide contestants with video segments featuring about 5,000 celebrities and totaling more than 1,000 hours – a huge dataset against which their AI solutions can be applied. The first-place winner will receive 200,000 yuan, or a little over $31,000, with smaller prizes for second and third place.
If this seems like an odd endeavor for an online video platform, it’s worth noting that iQIYI is organizing the conference in cooperation with the Chinese Conference on Pattern Recognition and Computer Vision, or “PRCV”, a new academic conference resulting from the merger of the Chinese Conference on Pattern Recognition and the Chinese Conference on Computer Vision. As such, it looks like this competition is aimed primarily academic interests in China, with iQIYI serving as a convenient media partner; it might thus be compared to the occasional competitions and challenges that America’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) issues to academic and industrial interests in the biometrics sector.
In a statement announcing the Celebrity Video Identification Challenge, iQIYI said it will start releasing “training and validation datasets” to competitors today, with a test dataset to be issued on September 17th. The submission deadline for AI solutions is October 15th, with winners to be announced on November 1st.